Manga: Aiura

From left to right: Kanaka Amaya, Saki Iwasaki, and Ayuko Uehara

Aiura is an ongoing Japanese yonkoma manga series by Chama. It was first published on the Niconico Seiga image sharing website in a subsection that hosted user-submitted and officially-serialized manga, and later in the magazine 4-Koma Nano Ace. An anime television series consisting of twelve five-minute episodes premiered on Japanese television in April 2013.

It follows the lives of high school students Kanaka Amaya, Saki Iwasawa, and Ayuko Uehara, three "annoying, spirited high school girls with zero motivation," and the lives of those around them. Because of its short length, the show bypasses many of the trappings associated with slice of life comedy, and maintains episodic consistency by focusing on only one or two incidents in each episode.

Those living in the US can watch this anime legally at Crunchyroll.


Aiura provides examples of:

  • Ambiguously Gay: Saki is tall, with boyish short hair, and her lifelong ambition is to marry into money.
  • Apathetic Teacher: Yamashita, the three main girls' homeroom teacher. She outright states that she has no interest in her students' educational progress and often blows off her curriculum out of boredom (or a desire to stay out of the weather). She is also frequently late to class and has had to face Matsuno more than once when arriving on campus. Possibly a foreshadowing of what will ultimately become of the main girls' laziness.
  • Attention Whore: Kanaka
  • Beach Episode: An interesting example in that it is also the final episode.
  • Berserk Button: Repeatedly ringing Saki's doorbell.
    • Misuzu reacts rather strongly when asked how one goes about marrying into money. One gets the impression she tried to do something similar before becoming a teacher.
  • Bookends: In the final episode, the girls spend the beginning of summer together doing what Ayuko had done alone at the end of summer.
  • Butt Monkey: Souta, who Kanaka and Ayuko trick into losing a game of "Jango" and buying them snacks.
  • Comic Trio: The three girls. Ayuko is the leader, Kanaka is the fool, and Saki is the only sane woman.
  • Cool Teacher: Matsuno, who challenges tardy students to a game of rock-paper-scissors, but lets them win.
  • Curtains Match The Windows: The three main girls: Saki (blonde hair and gold eyes), Kanaka (brown hair and eyes), and Ayuko (black hair and eyes).
  • Deadpan Snarker: Saki
  • Deranged Animation: The ending sequence.
  • The Ditz: Kanaka, to such a degree that even a teacher and her mother have called her an idiot.
  • Faking the Dead: In a bid for attention, Kanaka attempts this on two separate occasions. Saki ignores her, and afterwards muses that had it been Ayuko, she would have been genuinely concerned.
  • Food Porn: Apparently the subject of the anime's opening song. The opening itself contains several examples.
  • Genki Girl: Kanaka is very energetic and is always trying to find something to do.
  • Hikikomori: Saki decides to become one for a brief period in episode 11.
  • Hurricane of Puns: Intentional or not, the opening is full of them; from the similarities between the title and Apple's "i-" suffix, to "crab apples," to obscure allusions to a species of crab whose name ends in "-ura," to Steve Job's death by cancer.
  • Hot Teacher: Students are known to flirt with Misuzu, who dresses as a student, and looks young enough to be one. An interesting example of this trope in that the students don't seem to be aware that Misuzu is a teacher.
  • Idol Singer: Kanaka's lifelong dream. Her own mother told her she was too much of an idiot to do anything else.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Strangely enough, almost all fanservice is limited to Saki, indisputably the most masculine of the girls—probably because of her legs.
  • Nonuniform Uniform: Kanaka wears a bowtie instead of a necktie; Ayuko wears a yellow jumper instead of the vest; Saki wears her necktie loose, her vest open, and her shirt untucked.
  • The Nicknamer: Kanaka has a habit of giving weird nicknames to people such as "Ayukong" for Ayuko and "Yanachou" for Yanase.
  • Older Than They Look: Misuzu-sensei looks like one of the students and tends to wear a Sailor Fuku, much to Matsuno's dismay.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Amaya plays the red oni to Saki's blue oni.
  • Rock-Paper-Scissors: Saki and Kanaka play a game of rock-paper-scissors to decide who gets to buy the last melon bread.
  • Running Gag: During the pool chapter, Amaya says or does things that get her knocked out and left floating face down in the water several times (by Saki, naturally). Becomes a Chekhov's Gun later - Amaya spent so much time floating that she worked out the basics of swimming for herself.
    • Matsuno will never manage to get Wakatsuki to quit wearing a school uniform.
  • Sailor Fuku: This being a schoolgirl series, there are plenty of these to go around.
  • Scenery Porn: The anime's watercolor-esque backgrounds.
  • Seinfeldian Conversation: Since it's adapted from a 4koma, you can expect to find this. Lampshaded by the ending's lyrics:
    They were pointless conversations
    but they were fun nonetheless.
  • Sensei-chan: Misuzu-sensei wears a Sailor Fuku, plays the cutesy act, and Kanaka calls her "Misuzu-chan".
  • She's Got Legs: Saki.
  • Shout-Out Right off the bat, there's one to Dragon Ball:
    Kanaka: Did an alien kill your fellow apprentice?.
    Saki: You talking about Krillin?
  • Shrinking Violet: How Amaya remembers Saki from in middle school, complete with glasses. Saki denies this, but whether it is true has yet to be seen.
  • Yandere / Beware the Nice Ones: Just look at Ayuko's eyes when she kills Kanaka.
  • Zettai Ryouiki: Saki and her wet socks in episode 11.